Friday, 18 August 2017

El Iberico @ Pavilion

After reading about the 50% opening promotion of iberico ribs at a newly opened month-old Spanish inspired restaurant, there was no way I'd forego such a great deal, so here we were at El Iberico @ Pavilion.

Since it was just my friend and I, we didn't think we needed to make reservations as we thought it should be pretty easy to get a table for the two of us (and her kid) but when we got their at prime dinner time, we were told they were fully booked.  But that's the beauty of it being in Pavilion, we could always do with a bit more sightseeing shop-seeing first while waiting for a table to free up! ;)  No sooner had we walked away, we got a call that they had a table for us.

Once we made our orders, we were served some complimentary house-made bread with butter or a choice of a balsamic vinegar and olive oil dip while we wait for our food to arrive.  The bread had a crisp crust and was soft to soak in the balsamic/olive oil dip.

There's only one pasta on the menu and we ordered the Spaghetti with Clams @ RM29 in white wine sauce with parsley and chillies.  I would say that it was a generous portion (more generous-looking than their promotional photos) as there seemed to be an extra portion of pasta given.

As for the clams, they could be fresher.  They were just ok as they were on the border of being slightly fishy. It definitely cried out for the chillies (to mute the fishiness somewhat) though it was our choice to hold the chillies for the sake of my friend's daughter.

But it's all about the ribs here...and that's exactly what we came for.  We went with their top seller of Beer/Honey Mustard Meaty Ribs @ RM34 (normal price RM68).

It came with three ribs marinated in beer and honey mustard for 24 hours before they're put on the grill (three good-sized ribs are pictured on their Facebook though I've seen four on food blogs and their promotional banner)...???  Maybe you get three ribs if they're substantial enough or four if they're smaller ones...I don't know though I'd suggest they try to keep it standard lest people compare.  They can always offer it by weight (similar to what Iberico Kitchen do for instance) if it's difficult to get the ribs to come in standard portion sizes.

The ribs, with a good charring but lacking a bit of smokiness, were totally tender and succulent...and two of them were rather meaty too.  The lack of smokiness is probably due to the way the ribs are grilled...over a flat top (as seen in their Facebook video) instead of over a direct fire where the ribs can be 'flame-kissed'!

The ribs were served with a side of roasted potatoes and roasted vegetables of baby carrots and cherry tomatoes.  What can I say...the side was baby-sized! :P

The menu says that the ribs are +400g and it's meant for sharing between 2 - 3 persons while a blog mentioned that it's enough for 3 - 4 persons (I'm not sure what sized ribs the blogger got)! @_@  Based on this, my friend and I ordered only one plate but, after we polished off our first plate of ribs (there were only three and they weren't that big), we realised we'd have no problem polishing off another.  So, it's either false advertising or the ribs we got (for the promotion) were really small or they weren't quite 400g...I don't know.  Even us ladies could eat a plate of 3 ribs on our own (and that's after having some pasta as well)!

For our second round, we ordered the Original Spare Ribs @ RM34 (normal price RM68).  The third option would be Spanish Paprika Spare Ribs but seeing that it may have a bit of heat because of the paprika, we opted for a more kid-friendly option of original.

The original ribs, seasoned with just salt and pepper, are actually deep-fried (we were informed beforehand) and served with the same roasted vegetables (only lesser + missing the cherry tomatoes!).  Because the vegetables were so scant, it was very glaring when there were less on the plate! ;P

The ribs of this one were deep-fried, so it was a little on the oily side + the misfortune of getting a rather fatty piece of rib didn't help its cause (though getting one fatty rib out of six was pretty acceptable I think for these discounted ribs).  We need a bit of fat for flavour but too much can also be a put-off, so we had to scrape off some of the fatty bits.

It came with two dips, a herbs dressing with flavours in the song....parsley, sage (maybe), rosemary and thyme (possibly) in olive oil (yikes, adding to the greasiness) and a spicy sauce (that wasn't spicy at all).

Between the two, the beer and honey mustard one, with notes of slight sticky sweetness reflecting the taste of a good BBQ-like sauce, is definitely the better choice.

I was first attracted by the photos of the ribs on a blog and didn't notice (initially) only to realise later (when I compared the shot I took of the banner at the restaurant whilst writing the post) that the photos used in that blog were actually taken from the restaurant's promotional/advertising materials (they were the exact same ones in the banner and menu at the restaurant)! ;P  No wonder all the food photos (especially the ribs) looked so damn good...haiz, how gullible of me! O_o

We finished our meal with the Tarta de Santiago @ RM18 on the recommendation of a blog that it's worth dropping by just for it.  This traditional Spanish almond cake (I googled) is made principally with ground almonds, eggs and sugar.

It looks like a slice of cake but the texture is quite different from a cake since there's no flour involved.  It was delicious (no doubt about that) but some may find it expensive for such a small slice which can be finished in 3 mouthfuls if you really wanted to (but since it's made wholly with almonds, the price tag is more acceptable, I guess) decide if it's worth it! ^_*

I was glad I ordered a tangy Fresh Orange Juice @ RM12 to cut through all that meatiness (and some greasiness).  Their coffees like the Iced Cafe Latte @ RM14 my friend ordered ain't their strong suit.

Service was extremely friendly, perhaps a bit over-enthusiastic at times it seems (to some) but probably deemed passionate (to others).  It's nice to see such passion from the restauranteurs who believe in what they're doing wholeheartedly.  I was attended to by two 'retiree-looking' gentlemen (who could be part owners, I may be wrong) and one of them even sang 'happy birthday' to a guest personally (too eager to please?) even after their wait staff had already done so.

My Personal Opinion

Even though I was disappointed that the ribs didn't turn out looking quite as spectacular as the ones I saw online, I wasn't disappointed with the taste.

And because the ribs were half the price, there's definitely no cause for complaint as it's one heck of a deal! Now if I were to pay full price for these ribs (now that the opening promotion is over), I'll probably be more critical in my assessment.  I'd like the ribs to be bigger or longer and I'd want them looking more like the ones from Gourmet Hunter KL's video shown on El Iberico's Facebook.....and with a tad more roasted vegetables! :P

I might return at some point but hopefully by then there'd be better consistency in the size and fattiness of the normal priced ribs.  I'll definitely not be happy if I get even one overly fatty rib.  That isn't too much to ask, is it?  Hope not. ^_~

El Iberico
Lot C4.05.01 4th Floor
Pavilion Kuala Lumpur 
168 Jalan Bukit Bintang
55100 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: 03-2110 2631


  1. Sounds like the cake is gluten-free. Almonds are often used as a base in gluten-free cakes. Either way, they usually make a cake more dense and moist.

    1. I'm not sure if the cake is totally gluten-free but it was a very good cake :)

  2. Lala pasta is always what I'd order if given a choice! :D

    1. I actually prefer la-la cooked Chinese-style, with garlic & chillies, or in wine or kam heong style...yum! ;)

  3. WoW! You have just shared a new yummy place! I have never eaten Spanish and heard so much about their exotic culinary delights. I should bring my wife there for a surprise date.

    1. Oh, you haven't tried should, especially Spanish pork and octopus. Spanish is one of my favourite cuisines =)

    2. I think I have only eaten French, Italian, Swedish and Greek food. I know I could love European food for all their strong smells. So yums and fragrant.

    3. I don't think I've eaten Greek food before...unless you count tzatziki sauce....hehehe! ;D

  4. that 50 percent promo was quite a crowd-puller! and since you ordered other stuff too, it helped the restaurant to still make a reasonable profit from your table :)

    1. Hmmm, I wonder if the 50% promo was the reason why we got a smaller portion size ribs :'(

  5. That was what I missed, the deep discount! From what you described, had my brother and I been there, we would have to order one set each hah..hah...

    1. Ooo, sorry you missed out on the discount. Hmmm, I'm not sure if one set each would be enough for you guys since the portion ain't very big! ;)

  6. Same like you, give me 2 plates please!


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